This page is a text version of the Forest to Field History Book. You can purchase a PDF copy of the book in our online store. The PDF copy is an exact page by page representation of the original book. This text version has been reformated for the web and contains text recognition mistakes. These mistakes do not appear in the purchased version. The purchased version also includes each image in the original book.

Page Index of Forest to Field Volume One

Previous - Page 507 or Next - Page 509


by Thora Lofgren

John was one of the early homesteaders in the Westmount district of the Rural Municipality of Clan­ william. He applied for a homestead S.E. 6-17-18W on July 3, 1880 and received the title on October 4, 1901. He also purchased N.E. 6-17-18W and received the title August 15, 1903. John left the area about 1905.


by Ruth MacKay

Dawson MacKay was educated in Winnipeg, he was a veteran of the first world war. After the war, he was employed by Manitoba Co-op Dairies in Winnipeg. In 1921, he married Ruth Hall. In 1927, they moved to Rapid City where he managed the T. Eaton Company Creamery until it was sold. They came to Erickson in 1935 and have always remembered those eight years as happy and eventful ones in their life.

Our reason for moving to Erickson was that there was an opening at that time for a creamery. So our first year or so was spent in building the Lakelands Creamery. A busy time for all, as the wives and mothers of the clan spent considerable time taking lunches to the men morning and afternoon as they worked hard all day. Our clan had increased in number - my father and mother, Newman and Mary Hall had joined us - they lived in a tiny house near the curling rink. Our immediate family consisted of Dawson and me, Bill, Ken and Carol. We lived in the Peter Lee house, then on Main Street next door to D.Y. Billy, a wonderful location for the kids when they had a nickel to spend.

So our career got underway. As time passed we got involved in community activities. Peter was active in helping the boys and their hockey. On one of their trips to playa game in Crawford Park it was necessary to use the North Shore road, the truck broke down and they almost froze to death before help came and rescued them.

When the war was declared in 1939, everyone was involved in Red Cross, Legion and fund raising activities. A Community Club was formed and the W.1. as well, there was never any lack of things to do. The ladies were active in the women's groups at the church. For a period of time I helped with the choir, played the organ - Viola Miller was the leader. As well as Sunday services there were concerts during the year at Christmas and Easter and these usually involved a great deal of organizing and work for many people.

The teachers in the day school were interested in forming a Drama group. The W.1. acted as sponsors. I was asked to take on the duties of Director and in 1939 we entered a play "Lightened Darkness" in the Neepawa Music and Drama Festival and were the winners of the festival. The cast included Monica Anderson, Mary Booth, Dorothy Ross, Margaret Gusdal, Freda Martin and Les Spear. Winning in Neepawa entitled the group to enter the Brandon Festival of the Manitoba Drama League on June 9-10, 1939. We were not fortunate enough to win a second time, but Freda Martin won the


award for best actress of the Festival.

Our children looked forward with great excitement to going to the picture show when one was opened by the Brekke family. It was just across the street from our home, so we didn't have much choice but to let the boys go. Carol wasn't old enough at first to go, and one night shortly after supper, she disappeared. I began to look for her with no luck. The evening turned cold and dark and we began to panic. Someone announced what had happened to the people in the theatre and talk about community spirit, the show was closed down and everyone began to hunt for Carol. She was finally discovered safe and sound and asleep in a house where the Tommy Simpson family lived. Marion Simpson quite often stayed with the children and Carol had gone to find Marion. She was able to get the kitchen door open, then found there was no one home but the door was stuck and she couldn't get out again. She had cried herself to sleep.

During the war years with so many men enlisting, the farmers were not in a position to ship a lot of cream to the creamery and so it was eventually sold to the Brandon Creamery. Mr. Fotheringham was the head of that organization, he decided to build a Milk Bar (as they were called) at Clear Lake to serve as a depot for milk, cream, butter, eggs, ice-cream etc. He needed someone to take charge of the day-to-day operation, so I applied for that position and was accepted. A new venture for me but I received a good deal of help and supervision from Dawson. It was a busy time but fun.

In the fall of 1943, we moved to Brandon where Dawson managed the Manitoba Co-op Dairies. Leaving Brandon, we moved to Ashern to manage the Ashern Creamery. After the creamery was sold we retired to Winnipeg.

We have three children, Bill, the oldest, lives in Ed­ monton. He is employed by the Alberta government. Bill and his wife Lois have three children, two girls and one boy.

Kenneth, the second son, is married and lives in Vancouver with his wife Dorothy, and son Bill.

Carol lives with her husband, Bud Palmer, and son Bruce, in Red Deer, Alberta. Mrs. MacKay resides in Edmonton.


Lome and Leona have made Erickson their home since April 1961. They were both born and raised in the Vista­ Oak burn area where they received their grade and high school education. In 1958, after graduating from Oakburn High, they attended Manitoba Teachers' College. After graduation from the Teachers' College in 1959, Lome took a teaching position at Shellmouth, while Leona took a teaching position at Tales No. 721 in the Erickson area.

July of 1960, Lome and Leona were married at Oakburn. Lome took a teaching position in 1961 with the Erickson Consolidated S.D. while Leona continued teaching at Tales until 1963.

The Mackendenski's first daughter, Lisa, was born in